U.S. employers are legally required to provide a safe working environment for employees. Still, thousands of workers in California and across the country suffer on-the-job injuries every day.
Workplace injuries and fatalities
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are approximately 2.8 million nonfatal accidents and injuries on private industry worksites each year. While some careers are more dangerous than others, injuries can happen in any workplace.
BLS data shows manufacturing employees are the most likely to be hurt on the job, with 421,400 workers suffering injuries in 2019. Of those workers, 64,640 missed at least one day of work due to their injuries. Common manufacturing-related injuries included sprains, strains, soreness or pain, cuts, laceration and punctures.
Sadly, construction workers are some of the most likely to die on the job. According to data from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 20% of all workplace deaths in 2019 occurred in the construction industry.
A total of 5,333 U.S. workers were killed across all industries in 2019.
Top causes of workplace injuries
The three most common causes of workplace injury in the U.S. are:
- Overexertion and bodily reaction
- Slips, trips and falls
- Contact with objects and equipment
Together, these causes account for 84% of all nonfatal workplace injuries resulting in time away from work. Workers who suffer injuries from overexertion and bodily reaction and slips, trips and falls typically need 13 days off work to recover. In comparison, workers who are hurt due to contact with objects and equipment typically need five days off work.
California employees who suffer on-the-job injuries should report the accident to their supervisor, seek immediate medical treatment and file a workers’ compensation claim.